by Max Brantley
You say there was an election earlier in November?
Having run and lost on their central anti-tax stance, and with an austerity bomb nearing detonation, Republicans are softening their tone on the issue. But what may appear to be a meaningful shift on taxes among GOP leaders is belied by the unchanged policy specifics within the rhetoric.
“For the purposes of forging a bipartisan agreement that begins to solve the problem, we’re willing to accept new revenue under the right conditions,” said House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) in a post-election press conference.
That leaves the impression that Republicans are willing to raise revenue by limiting deductions and loopholes. Correct, but they’ve always been open to that — if and only if the new revenue is used to lower tax rates rather than reduce the deficit. Look closer and it’s apparent that that stance is still the same.
Tax increases for rich people are NOT part of the Republican plan. They'll be happy, however, to close "loopholes" that benefit the working poor and middle class.
On the other hand, this was moderately encouraging, though if there are any Republicans of this stripe in the modern Arkansas Republican Party they are WAY underground:
They are few, but they are vocal: the pro-same sex marriage, pro-choice, pro-tax Republican activists. For years, these groups have labored off the radar, trying to convince a party unwilling to listen that it needs to moderate on issues from social to fiscal. But after the Democrats’ decisive victories on Nov. 6, the Republican Underground says its finally time to go mainstream..
In the days since the election, TPM has talked with what one could call fringe Republican activists from across the issue spectrum. Like most in the GOP since the election returns that “shellshocked” the top of the ticket came in, they’re eager to see the Republican Party become more appealing to the national electorate. Unlike many Republican leaders, however, these activists say they actually know how to make the substantive changes to make that happen
The article names names of Republicans and interest groups working to moderate the party on discrimination against gays, abortion, taxes and more.